I write blogs for a marketing company and therefore do a great deal of research and writing about home improvement. Consequently, I’ve learned a great deal about home maintenance and a lot of it is valuable information. Naturally, I decided to share some of the knowledge with my readers in the hopes it helps you make your home more energy efficient.
Energy conservation remains a hot topic these days. With a surging global population, rapid inflation, and the consequences of pollution and global warming, now is the time to change how we use electricity in our homes and places of business. While we need electricity for day to day living, creating habits to save on electricity helps current and future generations.
Leaving depleted resources and letting future generations face tremendous hardships is no legacy to leave behind. On the home front, conserving electricity results in lower electrical bills, lessens the burden on electrical companies, and creates positive habits for younger family members to practice for their future. Saving electricity also conserves water in some cases, and helps us respect natural resources and use them with care.
- Have your home inspected for energy efficiency. Check for proper insulation, venting in the attic, window seals and door drafts. An energy efficient home delivers substantial future savings.
- If your home is heated with electricity, lowering the thermostat two-five degrees will save 5-10% annually.
- Draw blinds to block the hot summer sun and reduce air-conditioning demands.
- Whenever possible, close doors to empty rooms and only cool or heat occupied rooms.
- Reduce kitchen heating costs by making use of the outdoor barbecue, making salads and cold plates, and avoiding oven use throughout summer.
- Turn off unnecessary lights every time you leave a room unoccupied. Also, use natural lighting as much as possible for reading areas.
- Unplug appliances, lighting, and computers when not in use. While this may seem like an unnecessary chore, getting into the habit offers significant savings. Standby power can account for up to one tenth of yearly household electrical consumption.
- Use ceiling lights less and task lighting more for work, hobby and kitchen areas. Multi-lighting consumes much more electricity over time.
- Run shorter showers since hot water is expensive.
- Turn off the faucet when shaving, washing hands, and brushing teeth; run the cold tap more often than the hot.
- Ensure leaky faucets are fixed immediately. Hot water leaks can result in major electricity waste.
- If you still have old freezers or televisions, recycle or donate them—those energy suckers cost big bucks.
- Run full loads of laundry instead of multiple smaller ones. Save additionally by washing in cold water.
- Line-dry laundry as often as possible. Albeit easier when the sun shines, nothing smells as amazing as freshly sun-dried sheets.
- Add a small towel to dryer loads and drastically reduce drying time.
- Unselect the heat-dry setting on the dishwasher.
- Unplug a second fridge or freezer and only plug-in as needed. A great tip for summertime is to freeze containers of water or purchase freezer packs and add them to coolers as required.
- Use the microwave, toaster over, or crock pot over the oven—they use much less energy.
- When using the stove, keep lids on pots to reduce cooking time.
- Check for a proper seal on fridge and freezer doors. The ideal refrigerator temperature is between 2 and 3 degrees Celsius and -18 for the freezer. Since it’s the most costly appliance to run, it’s sensible to set it for efficiency.
Initiating a few small changes in how you run electricity reduces your annual electrical bill. When I received my first bill for the new home I was renting, I knew I had to make some changes. I challenged myself to reduce my bill by at least 40%. Two months later, I opened my next bill to discover I’d managed to reduce my electricity costs by 54%!
If I can do it, so can you. Take the challenge and spread the word.